NEW YORK – Serena Williams has a record-tying 24th career Grand Slam title in reach but will face perhaps her toughest test so far at this year's U.S. Open when she meets Ukrainian fifth seed Elina Svitolina in the semi-finals on Thursday.
Williams needed just 44 minutes to complete her rout of China's Wang Qiang, who was making her Grand Slam quarter-final debut, but she knows a much tougher test awaits if she is to book a spot in Saturday's final.
The eighth-seeded American has a 4-1 career record against Svitolina but the Ukrainian has not lost a set in New York and beat Williams in straight sets when they last met at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
“Well, she is obviously a fighter. She gets a lot of balls back. She doesn't make a lot of mistakes,” said Williams “She's one of those players that does everything really well. So I have to do everything well, too.”
Since returning from maternity leave in 2018, Williams has had three opportunities to draw level with Australian Margaret Court's Grand Slam record but fell in the last two Wimbledon finals and last year's U.S. Open final.